to think most part-time workers don't know what's about to hit them?! (Universal Credit)

(1000 Posts)
aufaniae Thu 31-Jan-13 23:32:41

Do you work part-time and get Working Tax Credit or Housing Benefit?

Did you know that once you're on Universal Credit, you'll be expected to attend the Job Centre to prove that you're looking for better paid work / more hours, in much the same way as unemployed people must prove they're looking for work.

If the Job Centre find an interview for you, you will have to attend (with 48 hours notice) even if it clashes with your paid work.

If you are offered a job with more hours, or better pay than your current one, you will be obliged to take it, even if you have good reason for not wanting to e.g. it's only a temporary post (whereas your current one is permanent) / has no training & worse prospects than your current job / makes picking your children up from school impossible / requires you to travel much further / has nothing to do with the career you're following.

If you don't attend the interview and/or take the job, your UC will be sanctioned, you will lose the UC for months or even years (depending on if it's your first infraction).

You will be forced to continue "upgrading" your job until you earn the equivalent of minimum wage for 35 hours a week.

I suspect there are lots of people (e.g. parents who work part time so they can pick their kids up from school) who will be affected by this, but don't realise it yet.

More info here

Diddydollydo Fri 01-Feb-13 04:40:06

Mosman I can't get into the link,her triplets are in reception (4) would she be still be OK because they are at school?

Mosman Fri 01-Feb-13 04:47:25

Diddy, she will be fine nobody is expecting her to work other than school hours, that's not unreasonable is it ?

Thedectective Your situation is no different from thousands of other couples but it is often the mum working part time, I don't see how you are going to be any worse off under this at all tbh.

Does anybody know how this will affect our situation ?

Reading the links etc it says that self employed people would declare their income every month and if the earnings are too low in a month have to apply for other work?

We are both self employed in the same company our projects tend to take a couple of months so we get a lump sum which lasts us a few months until the next project is completed. So would we have to look for other work in those months where our income is effectively £0 ?.

ThinkAboutItOnBoxingDay Fri 01-Feb-13 04:57:36

Mosman, i'm guessing Thedetective was responding to 'get a bar job <shrugs>'

Doing two shift jobs would be nigh on impossible in my experience. Both employers will just announce shifts a week in advance and expect you to show up. Bar work is usually available evenings and weekends only (suits bars as this is busy time) so this could fit with a low paid day job but won't work with a 24 hour shift pattern. Or even a 16 hour shift pattern used in most supermarkets. Unless one consequence of this will be employers are prepared to give up flexibility to keep workers. Possible but unlikely.

Mosman Fri 01-Feb-13 05:01:10

I can only speak from my experience whilst at university during the last down turn, which i concede was nowhere as bad as this one, but I had a call centre job paying £15,000 a year 7am until 11am, four hours studying and then on to a bar job from 6-12pm and came out with a better degree than many who did nothing but "study". I'm not super woman but you do sometimes just have to make it work, it took about a year to find this magical combination but i didn't stop until i did.

Oh and also if you withdraw your claim for tax credits etc do you still need to go through this ? Of I'd it a case of leave us alone and we will leave you alone?

Mosman Fri 01-Feb-13 05:34:53

From what I can gather if you don't want anything from them they can't make you look for a job it's only if you require government support.

Fairylea Fri 01-Feb-13 05:53:01

Where are all of these school hour jobs?

And what happens during school holidays?

I am not asking this because of me as I am lucky enough to be a sahm at the moment but I really don't understand where the conservative government think all these jobs are going to.magically appear from.....

sashh Fri 01-Feb-13 06:13:54

No job. I would move to where there are jobs.

Please Rose tell me where I can rent an adapted property? In fact find an adapted property to rent somewhere in Europe.

In the past I have moved for work, that is how I have lived in 4 UK cities in my adult life, but I didn't have children sitting GCSEs or need to live near family.

I'm losing out big style because I am working for 5 weeks.

I have been on Incapacity Benefit for a while on and off, off being when I have been able to work.

I have been offered and accepted 5 weeks work. The pay is good and working conditions also good. It is costing my £15 a day to travel to work.

I will not be paid until the end of the month, but my benefits stopped the day before I started working. I asked for a loan to help with travel. There is no such thing available, you can only make a crisis loan application for food.

A combination of credit card and friends lending money has allowed me to work.

In the past when this ended I would go back on IB, but now I will have to make a new claim for ESA, and this will be paid at the lowest level, not because my health has improved, but because this is the rule now.

You do not know what is going to happen in the future. Benefits are a safety net, and I am so grateful to all of you paying taxes (as I do, IB is a taxable benefit) as a society we should be keeping that safety net.

Fairylea Fri 01-Feb-13 06:33:48

So Rose ... no job / move to where there are jobs.

How does someone who lives in say Norfolk move to somewhere like London for example where rents and mortgages are higher with no job and no income except benefits to get one of these jobs?

Cuckoo land.

Fairylea Fri 01-Feb-13 06:41:35

Sorry also meant to add its all well and good suggesting securing a job before moving but when people have literally peanuts to do a food shop for a week how on earth do they fund travel costs for attending interviews some distance away?

treaclesoda Fri 01-Feb-13 06:42:13

I find the whole 'get off your bum and move to an area with better job prospects' mentality incredibly short sighted. For one thing, if you have very little income, the sheer cost of relocating would make it all but impossible. Plus if everyone did it, there would be increased pressure on housing in those areas.

But perhaps more importantly, what is the benefit in the long term? My DH and I could earn more money if we relocated to mainland UK. So we'd pay more tax, and we'd satisfy the 'get off your bum and move' brigade. But we'd leave behind two sets of elderly parents. Who would look after them? When they start needing day to day help, believe me, I'll be saving the state a fortune by doing the majority of it myself if its possible to do so. (And that's without even taking into consideration the emotional side of things, and the importance to many people of their family ties.) The cost/savings equation is nowhere near as simple as it first seems.

As it happens, I am a SAHM and DH works fill time, and we're very fortunate to be in a position where we're not eligible for any benefits anyway, but who knows what the future holds?

ledkr Fri 01-Feb-13 06:44:52

Who will fill the part time job vacancies when people have gone off to work on full time tescos?
I worked part time as a sw for years when I was a lone parent of four dc.
I cut down from ft when xh left us. What else could I do? I had to shop, cook, clean,taxi and emotionally support four children!
It pisses me off when lp get hammered because its harder for them to work ft and what about the children who have to be in childcare all the time even their school holidays? Then when it's parents day off they will be busy doing essential tasks.
I'm married now and share childcare and all household tasks with dh so the children get time too.
The govt need to put more effort into ensuring absent parents pay their flipping way rather than putting more pressure on the resident parent.

fuzzpig Fri 01-Feb-13 06:46:38

This is really confusing. I looked at a couple of the links and can't get my head around it all (brain fog)

I work FT at the moment, but on Tuesday I have an interview for a PT position in the same company. Might seem crazy that I'm deliberately trying to cut my hours (from 37 to 16) but last year I was diagnosed with a disability. If I keep doing FT I will not get better - I am stuck in a cycle of working for a couple of weeks and then having a relapse, then going back, getting ill again...

DH has been out of work for 2 years and is now on JSA looking for a job as he's had an operation and is officially fit to work. However he can't really do FT either, because that will mean I have to do all childcare/school runs etc, and I am currently not well enough for that either.

I have no idea what's going to happen; I gather in the short term we will lose WTC and get IS instead as I'm going below 24hrs? But after that?

Our DCs are 5 and 3. I don't get DLA and I'm not sure I'm that likely to although I will apply. We rent privately but are on the housing register. We get some HB, WTC and CTC.

If anyone can translate all this for me I'd be really grateful, my mind is too addled to understand any of it right now. Have a hospital appt but will be back later.

mercibucket Fri 01-Feb-13 07:00:28

Wtc - what's that if not a subsidy to business so they can get away with paying below a living wage

Now people are going to have that prop taken away and see how very little their company has got away with paying them

Wtc has been subsidising business for over a decade and is a disgrace. Sadly, I fear our govt has decicded qe will compete with low wage weconomies rather than skilled economies.

meadow2 Fri 01-Feb-13 07:01:31

I think if someone isnt disabled/sn families this isnt thst bad.You can have 5 years where you dont gave to do anything, then only have yo work 24 hours jntil the kids are 12.The childcare can be claimed back.I feel lucky I was born when I was, so when I had kids we get subsidised childcare.

Mosman Fri 01-Feb-13 07:05:37

I know i've been trying not to laugh you will be forced to upgrade your job how flipping awful, forced to improve your circumstances and take home pay lol

catsmother Fri 01-Feb-13 07:13:44

The lack of basic human empathy shown by some on this thread is a fucking disgrace.

The vast majority of lower paid people want to improve their circumstances and take home pay - of course they do. But there are simply NOT enough jobs out there for everyone who wants to do that.

KatyTheCleaningLady Fri 01-Feb-13 07:15:35

I agree with the poster who said WTC subsidises employers. Tesco gets cheap shelf stickers paid for by taxes, and the workers become more reliant on the state.

I would rather see money put into funding childcare so that parents can work. And I would rather see the safety net for the disabled and vulnerable strengthened. But I agree with Rose and others who are saying that people should have to hustle and strive to make ends meet.

merrymouse Fri 01-Feb-13 07:16:09

underemployment affects 10.5% of British workforce

I think there are quite a few people actively searching for more work and finding that there is none available.

KatyTheCleaningLady Fri 01-Feb-13 07:16:29

Oops. Stackers not stickers.

KatyTheCleaningLady Fri 01-Feb-13 07:19:53

I think we get some wtc now. I am self employed and my husband will be joining me. We may take a hit with wtc. But I still think it's better that way.

I just wish the government would subsidize child care rather than Tesco. Not everyone is lucky to have grandparents to help like we do.

Jinsei Fri 01-Feb-13 07:30:41

This is the problem. I'm sure they don't qualify for anything at all actually but why the hell should two people who are able bodied with no responsibilities be working part time and be topped up by the state ?

Because they can't get more hours even if they want them? Both of the staff I mentioned would love to have more hours, but we haven't got a budget to pay them so they aren't available. It's too simplistic to suggest that it always boils down to laziness.

Jinsei Fri 01-Feb-13 07:32:52

Thank you OP for answering my question. I will have a look at the MN guide. Like so many other changes that this government has introduced, it's my distinct impression that nobody has thought through the full implications. sad

LouMae Fri 01-Feb-13 08:10:28

Surely the vast majority of schools have breakfast and after school clubs nowadays? My DS has to attend them, as do many others. I'd prefer him to not have to, but in my mind being an LP I don't have that option- I should work full time to provide for him- why should I expect others to subsidise my time at home with him? I find that notion a bit morally bankrupt.

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